Saturday, April 30, 2022

"Apparently the Brontës All Died Young Because They Spent Their Lives Drinking Graveyard Water"

A disgustingly evocative description of the town.

Wikipedia dryly says, "The cause of death given at the time was tuberculosis, but it may have been complicated with typhoid fever (the water at Haworth being likely contaminated due to poor sanitation and the vast cemetery that surrounded the church and the parsonage)"

A car went airborne and crashed into the original Tommy's in LA and no bystanders were injured?

There's video of the crash (it's a famous burger/hot dog stand in LA):

Speaking of that area:

Did an Alabama corrections officer help a suspect facing the death penalty escape from custody?


authorities are searching for a sheriff's office employee and an inmate who went missing on their way to the courthouse on Friday at around 9:30 a.m.

[The] Assistant Director of Corrections ... broke protocol when she escorted [the 6'9"] inmate ... from jail this morning to apparently take him to the courthouse ....

... two sworn deputies should have been with him at all times, including during transportation to court.

[The corrections officer] coordinates all transports from the detention center to court and therefore knew the protocol, the sheriff added.


When [the officer] escorted [the inmate] out of the jail, she told the guard she was going to drop him off at the court and then go seek medical attention because she wasn't feeling well.


Authorities didn't realize they were missing until several hours later. 

Today's funny posts

This week's best Warhammer 40k miniatures and other hobby creations

Friday, April 29, 2022

Workers say "crime and verbal abuse at Union Station [in Los Angeles] have become unbearable"

LAT (the 2021 Academy Awards were held at Union Station): 

In the first two months of this year, violent crime at the station has shot up 94% over the same period last year, and property crime has doubled.


[Those] who work at Union Station say the danger is even worse than the official statistics reflect.


Unlike other parts of Metro’s sprawling rail and bus system, there is no law enforcement contracted to patrol the 38-acre Union Station at all hours of the day.

Today's funny posts

Snapchat's adorable drone; Homemade cyberdeck; How close are we to comic books illustrated with DALL·E 2?

"Called Pixy, the small yellow puck takes off from your hand, follows you around, and captures video that can be sent back to Snapchat."

Defender of Chernobyl patch?; Holographic sticker; Jumbled skyscraper is intended to be covered with greenery

Thursday, April 28, 2022

Panic at Israel’s main airport when an American family tried to travel home with an unexploded shell that they found while visiting the Golan Heights

The Guardian's write-up. This thread has videos of the panicked stampede, and a photo of the shell.

Miami Hurricanes basketball player publicly says he will transfer if he doesn't receive more money

Florida state law doesn't permit schools to be involved in NIL deals, and according to a Miami spokesperson, due to state law, it doesn't discuss or comment on NIL-specific deals. [The player's agent] confirmed to ESPN he isn't speaking directly with the Hurricanes' coaching staff.

Some highlights from the Famicase 2022 imaginary video game cartridge show

"The premier of the British Virgin Islands has been arrested in a sting operation in Miami on charges of conspiring to import cocaine into the United States and money laundering"

"the manager director of the Caribbean territory’s port authority, was also detained in the operation in which DEA agents posed as cocaine traffickers from Mexico’s Sinaloa cartel"

Several months ago, The Daily tried to answer why Haiti's president was killed:
In July, a group of men stormed the presidential compound in Haiti and assassinated the country’s president, Jovenel Moïse. Months later, the case remains unresolved.

Investigating the killing, the Times journalist ... found that Mr. Moïse had begun compiling a list of powerful Haitian businessmen and political figures involved in an intricate drug trafficking network.

New Humble Bundle features scifi comics, including seven volumes for $1

The $1 bundle includes three volumes of Valerian.

New Black Panther Marvel Legends figures available for preorder

Mostly slight changes from earlier releases, but the Killmonger looks upgraded from the original release:

Today's funny posts

This Thor 3 illustration would be a good print for a workout area; Japan's high-tech cemeteries; The gruesome Star Trek transporter accident

Wednesday, April 27, 2022

Plush javelins; Russia has deployed its war dolphins; That group genuinely uses "signature unclear"

Russia has deployed trained military dolphins at its naval base in the Black Sea – possibly to protect its fleet from an underwater attack – according to new analysis of satellite images:
Ukraine had also trained dolphins at an aquarium near Sevastopol, in a program born out of a Soviet-era scheme that fell into neglect in the 1990s.


The Sevastopol program was resurrected in 2012 by the Ukrainian navy, but the mammals fell into Russian hands after the 2014 invasion of Crimea. Ukraine unsuccessfully demanded the return of the animals, and RIA Novosti reported that Moscow planned to expand the scheme.     

"To avoid capture, this $325 million superyacht of one of Russia’s wealthiest oligarchs sailed at full speed for 18 days to cross the Pacific ocean. Now the 347 feet vessel is held in Fiji for docking without customs clearance and the US government is planning to seize it."

"They Flooded Their Own Village, and Kept the Russians at Bay:
Demydiv was flooded when troops opened a nearby dam and sent water surging into the countryside. Elsewhere in Ukraine, the military has, without hesitation, blown up bridges, bombed roads and disabled rail lines and airports. 


So far, more than 300 bridges have been destroyed across Ukraine

Gerhard Schröder is facing growing criticism in Germany for his ongoing support of Russia, as some politicians call for sanctions against him:
Schröder questioned the Russian president's potential involvement in or prior knowledge of the massacre in Ukraine's Bucha, refused to resign from the energy firms unless Russia fully stopped gas exports, and spoke fondly of Putin.

"I don't do mea culpa," Schröder told the outlet. "It's not my thing."

"The backstory behind the lawsuit that netted a family $5M after their house got pelted by golf balls"

Here's one write-up without context:

A Kingston, Massachusetts, family was awarded nearly $5 million after golf balls caused thousands in damages to their home.

The ... family has lived near fairway 15 on the golf course located on the Indian Pond Country Club since 2017.


When asked why the family does not move out of the home to avoid the potential for damages, their attorney says, "it would be impossible to sell the house with that type of situation. The problem had to be solved."

And here's an explanation:

“The lot was developed and laid out on a subdivision plan before the golf course was designed and constructed and the current principal/owner of the entity that owns the course is also the principal of the entity that developed the lot. Before my clients purchased the home from the builder, according to the builder a ball had broken a window, and the builder was told that it was an isolated issue by the course owner and would not happen again.

“In Massachusetts, under the current law, to the extent that the ordinary use of a golf course requires land beyond the course boundaries to accommodate the travel of errant shots, it is incumbent on the golf course to acquire either the fee in the additional land itself, or the right to use the additional land for that purpose.


“the course’s own website provided a description of the hole that encouraged players to try and cut the corner over a sand trap and reach another area which is significantly closer to the ... home and placed all of it in play from errant balls. In this case, the [homeowners] repeatedly asked for help from the course owner before hiring an attorney or bringing a suit. They even obtained a proposal to install a net on their property and a second near the tee. 

Toxic foam from a polluted river is covering a town in Colombia

"building-sized piles"

New Humble Bundle features "Jurassic Park Evolution" for $1

And $6-$12 for the DLC to further build out your theme park.

Today's funny posts

New "Retro Collection" 3.75" G.I. Joe figures available for preorder

New toy preorders include several 3.75" G.I. Joe figures, McFarlane's latest DC wave with build-a-figure Atrocitus, and Mezco Doctor Doom with Hinged spell book with printed pages and Cosmic Power Siphon Harness:

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

Deathloop fashion lookbook; Concert features flying whales and dolphins; Drone trench run

Iron Maiden accessory for action figures

Available in regular and bloody versions, with two "face" options and restraints:

New G.I. Joe figures including Zarana with swappable hairstyles

Zarana, Crimson Gruard, and more:

Today's funny posts

This looks like a bootleg figure, but no, it's really a new line of "Time Bandits" toys

Three figures (no minotaur) listed as expected next month:

"Delta, facing a union drive, says it will start paying flight attendants during boarding"

"Usually, [Delta's non-union] flight attendants are paid starting when the aircraft doors close."

Covid-era scarecrows; Worf fanzine; Tiny superkick

Monday, April 25, 2022

Marvel Legends Thor: Love and Thunder wave available for preorder

Natalie Portman Thor, Teenager Groot, and more.

NECA's Back to the Future Part 2 Ultimate Griff Figure looks surprisingly great?

One of today's new NECA preorders:

"Beverly Hills’ roughly 60 cameras per 1,000 residents ranks it among the most surveilled cities in the world"


Los Angeles, by comparison, has roughly 35,000 cameras and 4 million people — or about 9 for every 1,000 residents.


The city has about 2,000 closed-circuit cameras — nearly 1 for every 17 residents — along with others at many intersections that snap photos of drivers going through red lights, as well as drones and dozens of devices that can read license plates


The ultimate goal?

“Ubiquitous coverage”

But also from last week:

Beverly Hills residents wake up to antisemitic fliers — again.


The Beverly Hills Police Department is investigating and attempting to identify the people behind Saturday’s fliers.

"George Russell ... said his car's 'porpoising' problems were worse than ever and causing him real pain"


 "This is the first weekend where I've been truly struggling with my back and like chest pains from the severity of the bouncing. But it's just what we have to do get the fastest lap times out of the car."


Team boss Toto Wolff said the problem was fundamental for a team who have won the last eight constructors' titles but are now out of sorts.

"You see the bouncing on the main straight, I wonder how the two of them can even keep the car on the track at times"

Today's funny posts


Adorable Sprytle pin; Good Craig/Negga Macbeth pin; Vampire tattoo

This and other pins available here.

Sunday, April 24, 2022

Singapore will allow single women aged 21 to 35 to freeze their eggs, but


The island nation follows in the footsteps of other Asian countries ... to freeze their eggs in a bid to prolong fertility and boost birth rates. 


Singapore will allow only married couples to fertilise the frozen eggs, raising questions over whether women should own the rights to their eggs any less if they do not choose to get married to men. It adds to a list of options that singles and LGBT families do not have the same access to – from public housing to adoption 


China, known to have forced sterilisations and abortions on women as part of its decades-long one-child policy, now says it will “intervene” in abortions for unmarried women and teens.

Quarantine fences throughout the city; Workers forced to camp in the rain; Traditional Chinese medicine and a face full of disinfectant

Today's funny posts

The Undiscovered Country art; Borg Queen concept art; Star Trek: The Next Generation: The Animated Series

Saturday, April 23, 2022

New Humble Bundle celebrates the original Image comics

Savage Dragon, Cyberforce, and more.

The new MAFEX Steel and Thor figures look great

Steel and Thor available for preorder:

China is using an army of geese to defend its border with Vietnam

NatGeo (which goes into the history of using geese as guards):

Since October 2021, the Chinese government has deployed this so-called “geese army” across 300 miles of China’s Chongzuo Prefecture in an effort to stop the coronavirus from entering China via illegal immigration. Chinese domestic geese need no training; once they establish their territory, the five-pound birds defend it fiercely.

Reinforcing this feathered garrison are about 400 mixed-breed guard dogs, which accompany border police on patrol while the birds keep stationary watch. 


guard geese may be helping: In December 2021, a goose allegedly honked the alarm to help catch two people illegally crossing the border


“Dogs can sound the alarm sometimes just for fun or to talk together from dog to dog. But geese will only do so if there’s an intruder that goes into their special area”


“Could we train a goose? Probably, but that would be very hard”

Today's funny posts

This week's best Warhammer 40k miniatures and other hobby creations

Friday, April 22, 2022

"Binance Denies Allegations It Shared Russian Users' Data With Law Enforcement"


In April 2021, Russia's financial intelligence unit met in Moscow with the regional head of Binance, the world's largest crypto exchange. The Russians wanted Binance to agree to hand over client data, including names and addresses, to help them fight crime, according to text messages the company official sent to a business associate.

At the time, the agency, known as Rosfinmonitoring or Rosfin, was seeking to trace millions of dollars in bitcoin raised by jailed Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, a person familiar with the matter said. Navalny, whose network Rosfinmonitoring added that month to a list of terrorist organisations, said the donations were used to finance efforts to expose corruption inside President Vladimir Putin's government.

Binance's head of Eastern Europe and Russia ... consented to Rosfin's request to agree to share client data, the messages showed. 


Binance's willingness to engage with Rosfin through 2021 contrasted with its approach elsewhere. Some national regulators have accused the company of withholding information. 


Binance "will be writing a formal complaint to Reuters under their own editorial code," the statement reads.

Is this a parody account?

Today's funny posts

Reading nook; Striped plane; Max Schreck resting

Thursday, April 21, 2022

"Bride prices" are soaring in China


Nationwide, there were over 723 million men compared with over 689 million women, leading to a surplus of roughly 34 million men to women, according to official statistics.


In Zhengning county, Gansu province, northwest China where Qin lives, the average annual income was just over 20,000 yuan (US$3,136) last year, meaning it would take 15 years to raise the money demanded as the bride price by Qin’s girlfriend’s family.


The Zhengning government said it had set an upper limit for the bride price at 80,000 yuan (US$12,547) for rural families, and 60,000 yuan (US$9,410) for public servants in its latest clampdown on high marriage expenses, according to its reply to Qin on April 7.

"A company accused of handing out fake results for hundreds of coronavirus tests will pay more than $20 million in a settlement"

LAT on a new company that I guess is expected to be able to pay off the fine:

More than 500 test results are “confirmed or suspected to be faked, falsified, or forged,” the attorneys wrote. In their complaints, they alleged Sameday would forge a negative result — at the direction of its CEO — when someone who had not gotten their result in time complained or threatened to report the company.

Sameday said in a statement that it was founded in September 2020 “to make fast, reliable COVID testing available to everyone.”


a physician who was accused of teaming with the company to get reimbursed by health insurers for medically unnecessary consultations, also agreed to pay nearly $4 million to resolve allegations of insurance fraud, the city attorney’s office said.

... an attorney representing [the doctor], denied any wrongdoing: “We settled the matter, but we do not believe that [he] did anything that was unethical.”

"The Largest Subreddit for Amazon Workers Has Banned the Word 'Union'"

As described in this article, the explanation seems to be that the topic has grown too contentious (?):

Some workers have suggested using the word “onion” to refer to unions to circumvent the new rule. 

"Some chip-starved manufacturers are scavenging silicon from washing machines"

"A major industrial conglomerate has resorted to buying washing machines and tearing out the semiconductors inside for use in its own chip modules"

Today's funny posts

Soccer team's new "Hypno Top"; Hasbro didn't want that artwork sold; Good book title

Remarkable cover for "Winning Post 3"; Augmented reality business card concept; Horseshoe Crab tattoo idea, perhaps

Cheap at ebay.

Wednesday, April 20, 2022

"This Is Why You Don’t Get Into Bed With An NFL Team"

Back in June of 2019, the city of Rock Hill, South Carolina, threw itself something of a party. The occasion being celebrated was the local government’s successful wooing of the Carolina Panthers, who had just agreed to build a new $800 million practice facility in town. York County, where Rock Hill is located, closed the deal by signing a bill that would grant the Panthers $115 million in tax incentives over the course of 15 years. At the rally in 2019, Rock Hill Mayor ... compared the Panthers’ impending arrival to Disney World’s arrival in Florida.


Given the relatively vague nature of the statements that have been released by both sides, it’s unclear whether the county originally promised to pony up $225 million that it now doesn’t have, or if the Panthers sprung the request for that extra money out of the blue. The answer doesn’t really matter at this point, though, because either way Rock Hill has a big mess on its hands. Not only is the city facing the prospect of being left with a half-built practice facility on a huge chunk of land that it already sold to the Panthers, it has already begun overhauling the I-77 interchange that is near the site of the practice facility, a project that was undertaken for the purpose of accommodating the additional traffic that the facility would bring.

"Thirty-four people were shot in Los Angeles in the last week, and 23 of the shootings were concentrated within a 'remarkably small area'"

Described as "typical" gang on gang violence.

Speaking of crime, a new Houston ordinance requires businesses to install security cameras and turn footage over to police:

City Council passed the new ordinance in a 15-1 vote Wednesday. The mandate applies to all bars, nightclubs, sexually-oriented businesses, convenience stores and game rooms inside city limits .... Those businesses will be forced to hold security footage for 30 days and turn it over to police within 72 hours of their request. 


At-Large Council Member .... a former Houston police officer, was the lone nay vote .... He said the onus on businesses to install cameras is unfair and also believed the measure doesn't go far enough to reduce crime.

The vote came over the objection from the American Civil Liberties Union, which sent a letter to council members this week claiming the move was unconstitutional

China to relocate "entire communities" to fight Covid


An official notice from local Communist Party officials in an area in the north of the city details orders to transfer residents to quarantine facilities more than 100 miles (160km) away.


An official notice issued to residents told them to pack their belongings and leave their wardrobe doors open. They were also told to leave open the front door of their home. Images on social media of people queuing with packed suitcases at night-time showed the scale of the operation.

The notice from the town's Epidemic Prevention Office also included this order: "You cannot bring your pets with you during this evacuation, but we will arrange for them to be taken care of."

A new civilian hire of the Baltimore Police Department was fired after they realized he was a person of interest in a homicide investigation


City police identified the official as ... the chief of fiscal services, which is the No. 3 position in BPD's fiscal division.


Sources told the 11 News I-Team that [the man] was fired soon after he got on an elevator at police headquarters and was recognized by a detective working the homicide case in which [the man] is a person of interest.


[Also, a] man by the same name was put on the city's gun offender registry in 2019. 

Baltimore Sun:

“There was a background investigation done, and the HR department did a background investigation,” he said. “It was missed.”

[T]he ongoing homicide investigation is unrelated to the arrest that put [the man] on the gun offender registry.

TMNT Fugitoid (Mirage Comics) by NECA available for preorder

The new NECA toy preorders include a toon-style "Joy of Painting" Bob Ross with friendly little raccoon, and the TMNT's Fugitoid:

New Marvel Legends available for preorder including immortal space vampire Knull

Some fun figures including movie Peter Parker and Ned in casual clothing, and Ned comes with an alternate masked head.

Today's funny posts

Walking table; Coastal Research Amphibious Buggy (CRAB); Nightmare bunny

Tuesday, April 19, 2022

Former Central California water manager allegedly stole $25 million in water


The indictment does not name the water district, but in 2018, [California's Attorney General] announced the arrest and filing of felony charges against five individuals for the misuse of public funds amid widespread corruption at the district.


The water theft scheme began in 1992, according to the federal indictment.


In April 2015, drought lowered the canals’ water level enough for the pipe, lid and drain turnout to be discovered by authorities, according to the indictment.

New Warhammer 40k Joytoy miniatures

Including my favorite combo of chainsword and power fist. These are each sold individually:

Supercut of Draymond Green playing defense against Jokic

Jokic is listed as 6'11'', Draymond listed at 6'6", but with a 7'1" wingspan.

The new Transformers Metroplex comes with a delightful two-handed buzzsaw and flip-down welding mask

Available for preorder:

Today's funny posts

"BUYER BEWARE: So this book is so big it pushes the limits of what the printing company can handle"

Apollo 47 Technical Handbook:
In a somewhat alternate Earth in a rather different 1987 you will explore the Moon on the 47th Apollo Mission!  The Moon!  Where forty-six other moon missions have gone before.  Forty-six.  That's an awful lot of successful Moon missions.  

And that's the point:  Apollo 47 imagines a future where walking the surface of the Moon is a little bit boring.  You engage in workaday astronaut activities using a simple improvisatory rules set to play in a quiet world of technobabble and the slow progression of science.  If something exciting happens please stop play immediately and go do something else–you are in the wrong game.

This zero-prep game of improvisatory radio chatter can be played through just about any communications medium for any length of time.  Five minutes to spare?  Spend it recalibrating a JLDO unit that's gone out of alignment.  Tighten the tamping line using the three baseline screws.  The blue screen torques the focus to the left, the green screw adjusts the dust pan height.  You should have a yellow-handled size 20 tamping gun and a slot puller in your work bag.  Got them?  Okay, so next...

One astronaut is supported by a team of voices on the radio.  Work, banter, and cause gentle problems for each other.  

I... I just can't explain this game any better than that.

What you get:

You are buying a twelve-hundred page book.  It's 8.5x11 and over seven pounds.  It's just stupid big.  The books pages are distributed roughly this way:

1 page contains the game

9 pages contain advice on how to play the game

13 pages contain useful prompts for operating the game

1177 pages are reproductions of NASA manuals and papers related to the Apollo missions which can, if you need it, provide prompts to spur you on.  Spoiler:  I never use the prompt pages and don't really expect you to do so.  They just aren't necessary for play.

This book is a tremendous folly.  It's ludicrous and bloated and couldn't make me happier.  If you aren't joining me in hearty guffaws at something this THIS then stick with the PDF.  You'll be fine.

Beautiful computer; TRex with a sword; Nightmarish slime mold looks like praying hands

Monday, April 18, 2022

Today's funny posts

LOL, I guess this is Miek in Thor: Love and Thunder?

Entertainment Earth has some new toy listings including this amazing figure:

Seems like I missed this fabulous concept art:

And there's a glimpse in the trailer:

Chris Hemsworth posted a body weight workout

(And Thor: Love and Thunder looks fun):