Tag Archive for science

120-Merkins?

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Wigs can be worn for all kinds of various reasons. They can change your appearance when you are trying to be someone else, or a toupe’e for instance can make you feel more like yourself. The same goes for the merkin. It’s put to use when hair is needed down there. This episode is all about the pubic wig.

This was a listener request. Be careful what you wish for.

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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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100-Four Humors?

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Join us for our one hundredth episode! We read a few emails about our first 99 episodes and reminisce about our favorite moments. Then we discuss the four humors.

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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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088-Carnivorous Plants?

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The ability to adapt is crucial to sustain life upon this planet. Some plants have adapted the ability to digest insects to supplement nutrients in the poor soil quality in which they live.


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.

 

083-Noteworthy Animals III : That’s Fowl?

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We realized that we were lacking birds in our previous noteworthy animals episodes. We decided to make is up the entire avian branch with an episode dedicated to them.

With Special Guest Jason Cavegn

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081-Champ?

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Lake Champlain sits between Vermont and Upstate New York. It is the vacation spot for many in the area as well as being used by commercial fisherman. There has been many sightings of something strange near the surface of the lake.

Special guest:

Frank Tybush

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