Tag Archive for odd

116-Weird Cars?

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Since the invention of the combustion engine in 1794 we have dreamed up some amazing vehicles.  We try to pick out the strangest for this episode.

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115-Florida Man?

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Florida Man is a Recent development in the public consciousness. Some of the strangest news headlines seem to come out of this semi-tropical state. So is the heat, the direct sunlight, or something more nefarious causing the phenomenon known as Florida Man.

 

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107-Vestigial?

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Passed down from our ancestors vestigial traits are are inside our DNA. Some are fully useless, some are partially useless and some we thought of as junk organs have come back around to be useful again.

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106-Mandela Effect?

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Is the Mandela effect a collective misremembering or something more sinister? Some say that it’s confabulation and others are proponents of altered timeline or multiple universe theories. Whatever it happens to be we agree it is at the very least a strange coincidence. Thanks to Joel from www.hobotrashcan.com for joining us

Special Guest:

Joel Murphy

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099-Maryland Spooky Sites?

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Living in Maryland most of our lives we have encountered places here where the history is almost palpable. Native Americans were drawn to the area with the rich seafood able to be caught along the shores of the Chesapeake bay. Being one of the original thirteen colonies, we are home to some amazing, spooky and possibly haunted sites.

With Special Guest:

Photos from Joe:

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098-Buried Alive?

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PREMATURE BURIAL
To die is natural; but the living death
Of those who waken into consciousness,
Though for a moment only, ay, or less,
To find a coffin stifling their last breath,
Surpasses every horror underneath
The sun of Heaven, and should surely check
Haste in the living to remove the wreck
Of what was just before, the soul’s fair sheath,
How many have been smothered in their shroud!
How many have sustained this awful woe!
Humanity would shudder could we know
How many have cried to God in anguish loud,
Accusing those whose haste a wrong had wrought
Beyond the worst that ever devil thought.
With Guest Ryan Stike:

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097-Blobs?

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Beware of the blob, it creeps
And leaps and glides and slides
Across the floor
Right through the door
And all around the wall
A splotch, a blotch
Be careful of the blob

With Special Guest:

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093-Cheese?

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Cheese is one of mankind’s greatest inventions. Whether it be mass produced or artisan, sharp or mild, fresh or cave ripened, there is a cheese for you.  So join us for this very gooey, possibly moldy, and most likely pungent cheese filled episode.

 


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092-Marfa Lights

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Joe took a trip to Texas to find the elusive Marfa Lights. He spent time at the Marfa lights festival before driving off the highway to search out this incredible phenomenon.

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085-The Black Squirrels of DC? -a narrative

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Something that I don’t think about much in my daily life are rodents. I do, however, think about the odd and the strange things that I observe. If you have spent time in the parks or outdoor areas of Washington DC you’ll notice that there is one particular part of the fauna that sticks out; the black squirrels of DC. On a trip to Niagara Falls with my wife, we saw many black squirrels in the parks above the falls. This led me to wonder if there was a connection between the two.

I know there are other parts of the country that are home to black squirrels. Marysville, Kansas, for instance, is known as Black Squirrel City and has enacted a twenty five dollar fine for harming one. Their unusual dark rodents were said to be brought there by a traveling carnival in cages and escaped from the exibit. With the abundance of our little nut-stashers on the east coast being grey it seems a mystery where these raven colored rodents came from. Oddly enough the darker are the same species as the lighter eastern grey squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis). What makes them darker is a melanistic color phase, it’s a recessive gene. It is theorized however that these black squirrels were the more abundant variety at the beginning of our country. The tree canopy was so thick at the time that the shading gave their darker look an advantage of camouflage from hawks and other predators. The trees started being cleared for housing and at the same time hunters would pick them out of the treetops for dinner. The gray phase variety suddenly had the advantage against the the pale blue sky. Their main predator had changed.

During the mid to late 1800’s reintroducing a squirrel population into city parks became a popular undertaking for city officials. Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago, New York and Washington DC were all constructing public parks and it felt natural to fill them with the native wildlife. Squirrel hunting within city limits started being banned in cities, including DC in 1906.

That brings us to how a small pocket of black squirrels came to nest in our capital city. In 1902 The National Zoo received a package of 18 black phase eastern gray squirrels from the Department of Crown Lands of Ontario and in exchange they received 18 gray. A few years later in 1906 they made the same exchange again. The entire population of black squirrels that are now blanking the city and its suburbs are from these original 36.

In my research about this subject I fell down a squirrel hole on the internet finding not only black squirrel colonies but also white morph and albino colonies. Olny, Illinois has a white squirrel colony and every year in October they have a count to see how they are fairing. 88 this past year up from 75 the previous. I also found out about an ever expanding group of eastern grays that have taken over a swath of Italy after being brought there by a U.S. ambassador. The quartet escaped and have been putting a hurting on the European red squirrel habitat ever since.

If you have ever visited the nations capital there are many sites to behold. The Smithsonian museums, the International Spy museum, the Washington Monument are all amazing places to visit, however my favorite are the outside places. The National Mall, National Zoo and National Arboretum are all places where you can catch a glimpse of the famed black squirrel of DC.