Friday humour - March 18, 2016

Gussius @ Bluehaze

It seems that almost everybody is having a go at US Presidential hopeful,
Donald Trump.

Is it because he’s a billionaire and his critics are simply envious?
Perhaps now that he’s the front runner for their nomination, the GOP
Establishment are soiling their underwear at the thought of Trump actually
making it to the Whitehouse; or possibly as the bookies suggest, America is
done experimenting along the fringe of insanity.

Who cares? And why should we be any different? Here is a modest collection
of Trump Dumps for your enjoyment – unless you are a fervent supporter,
in which case turn away now from the following stroke inducing, red-neck
inciting comments collected from around the globe.

A personal favourite from Scandinavia:
 Click here

Donald as a babe:
 Click here

Trump’s clothing line (deported from OS):
 Click here

Sasha Baron Cohen reveals that he is behind the Trump façade:
 Click here

Big hands, big feet – everything else is in proportion:
 Click here Click here

Something hate makes great again:
 Click here

Las Vegas takeover:
 Click here

Pointless:
 Click here

There’s something about his undetectable hairpiece:
 Click here

Trump’s driver with a blowdryer:
 Click here

In Africa, people like Trump have their own native animal – Dik Dik:
 Click here

At the end of the day, he will be a Straw man:
 Click here

Contributions this week are due to 4M, Anonymous3, Arfermo, Billy Bunter of
Adelaide, Duke of Barsinov, Sack, Seasoldier, Wally, Sir Edward, and 
Clooneys Twin.

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Cheeses Craft:
 Click here Click here

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Something for consideration:

A man was chosen for jury duty who very much wanted to be dismissed from
serving. He tried every excuse he could think of but none of them worked.

On the day of the trial he decided to give it one more shot. As the trial
was about to begin he asked if he could approach the bench.

"Your Honour," he said, "I must be excused from this trial because I am
prejudiced against the defendant."

"Oh?" the judge said.

"Yes!" the man replied. "I took one look at the man in the blue suit with
those beady eyes and that dishonest face and I said 'He's a crook!
He's guilty, guilty, guilty' So your Honour, I could not possibly stay on
this jury!"

The judge replied, "Get back in the jury box. You are just the kind of
juror we are looking for -- a good judge of character."

"But your honour!" the man protested. "How can you say that?!"

"Because," the judge said, "that man is the defendant's lawyer."

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*If People Bought Cars Like They Buy Computers*

General Motors doesn't have a "help line" for people who don't know how to
drive, because people don't buy cars like they buy computers -- but imagine
if they did....

*Call No. 1*

HELPLINE: "General Motors Helpline, how can I help you?"

CUSTOMER: "I got in my car and closed the door, and nothing happened!"

HELPLINE: "Did you put the key in the ignition slot and turn it?"

CUSTOMER: "What's an ignition?"

HELPLINE: "It's a starter motor that draws current from your battery and
turns over the engine."

CUSTOMER: "Ignition? Motor? Battery? Engine? How come I have to know all of
these technical terms just to use my car?"

*Call No. 2*

HELPLINE: "General Motors Helpline, how can I help you?"

CUSTOMER: "My car ran fine for a week, and now it won't go anywhere!"

HELPLINE: "Is the gas tank empty?"

CUSTOMER: "Huh? How do I know?"

HELPLINE: "There's a little gauge on the front panel, with a needle, and
markings from 'E' to 'F.' Where is the needle pointing?"

CUSTOMER: "It's pointing to 'E.' What does that mean?"

HELPLINE: "It means that you have to visit a gasoline vendor, and purchase
some more gasoline. You can install it yourself, or pay the vendor to
install it for you."

CUSTOMER: "What!? I paid $20,000 for this car! Now you tell me that I have
to keep buying more components? I want a car that comes with everything
built in!"

*Call No. 3*

HELPLINE: "General Motors Helpline, how can I help you?"

CUSTOMER: "Your car sucks!"

HELPLINE: "What's wrong?"

CUSTOMER: "It crashed, that's what went wrong!"

HELPLINE: "What were you doing?"

CUSTOMER: "I wanted to run faster, so I pushed the accelerator pedal all
the way to the floor. It worked for a while, and then it crashed -- and now
it won't start!"

HELPLINE: "It's your responsibility if you misuse the product. What do you
expect us to do about it?"

CUSTOMER: "I want you to send me one of the latest versions that doesn't
crash anymore!"

*Call No. 4*

HELPLINE: "General Motors Helpline, how can I help you?"

CUSTOMER: "Hi! I just bought my first car, and I chose your car because it
has automatic transmission, cruise control, power steering, power brakes,
and power door locks."

HELPLINE: "Thanks for buying our car. How can I help you?"

CUSTOMER: "How do I work it?"

HELPLINE: "Do you know how to drive?"

CUSTOMER: "Do I know how to what?"

HELPLINE: "Do you know how to drive?"

CUSTOMER: "I'm not a technical person! I just want to go places in my car!"

*Ask any support tech:* they'll tell you these are not exaggerations!

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The Perfect Career For A Writer

There was once a young man who, in his youth, professed his desire to
become not just a writer, but a/great/writer.

"That will take a lot of work," people warned him. He didn't relent in his
quest.

"That's not easy, son," his dad said gently. But the young man was
determined: he wanted to be/great./

What did he/mean/by "great," someone finally asked. How would he measure
his success?

"I want to write stuff that the whole world will read, stuff that people
will react to on a truly emotional level, stuff that will make them scream,
cry, howl in pain and anger!" he said, "because/that/would be the mark of a
great writer!"

Well, a wise career counsellor helped him get his wish!

That young man now works for Microsoft -- writing error messages.

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Estate Planning

Dan was a single guy living at home with his father and working in the
family business.

He toiled at it for years, until finally his father was on his deathbed --
Dan would inherit a fortune! He decided he needed a wife with which to
share the vast estate.

One evening at an investment meeting he spotted the most beautiful woman he
had ever seen.

Her natural beauty took his breath away. "I may look like just an ordinary
man," he said to her, "but in just a few weeks, my father will die, and
I'll inherit 100 million dollars."

Impressed, the woman accepted his business card. And just three short days
later, she became his stepmother.

Women are/so/much better at estate planning than men.

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Breast Enlargement The Easy Way

A flat-chested young lady went to a popular surgeon known for "no scars"
about enlarging her breasts.

To her shock, Dr. Bosley advised her, "Every day after your shower, rub
your chest and say, "Scooby doobie doobies, I want bigger boobies!" He
guaranteed success and, figuring she had nothing to lose, she did what he
told her to do faithfully for several months.

To her utter amazement she grew terrific D-cup b*obs! One morning she was
running late, got on the bus, and in a panic realized she had forgotten her
morning ritual.

Frightened she might lose her lovely b*obs if she didn't recite the little
rhyme, she stood right there in the middle aisle of the bus,
closed her eyes and said quietly, "Scooby doobie doobies, I want bigger
boobies."

She apparently didn't say it quietly enough, though, since a guy sitting
nearby looked at her and asked "Oh! Are you a patient of Dr. Bosley?'

"Yes I am," she said, a bit embarrassed. "How did you know?"

He winked and whispered, "Hickory d*ckory dock...."

--------------

This is an actual inquiry sent to the Montrose
(Colorado)/Enterprise/newspaper -- and published there on June 5, 1906:

Wants To Know

Kind and respected sir: I see in the paper that a man named John Sipes was
attacked and ate up by a bear whose cubs he was trying to get ... in the
mountains near your town. What I want to know is did it kill him or was he
only partly ate up. I think he is a distant husband of mine. My first
husband was of that name but I thought he was killed in the war. I have
been married twice since. If it is him, you will know by his six toes on
the left foot. He also has a spread eagle tattooed on his front chest and
an anchor on his right arm. If alive don't tell him I'm married to Joe
White because he never liked Joe. Maybe you'd better act as if I'm dead,
but find out all you can about him and please answer back.

P.S. Was the bear killed? Also was he married again and did he leave any
property with me laying claims to?

(As collected by*The Fore-Kin Trails Genealogical Society*
, target=_blank>Click here Montrose,

Colorado)

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On the gentler side:

Besides all the terrible shootings, and corruption and greed, the following
pictures also are happening every day -  life has its share of beautiful
moments:
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here

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Yorkshire speak:

Police have just released details of a new drug craze that is being carried
out in Yorkshire nightclubs. Apparently, Yorkshire club-goers have started
injecting Ecstasy just above their front teeth.
Police say the dangerous practice is called: "e by gum"
----------
A Yorkshire man takes his cat to the vet, and says, "Ayup, lad, I need to
talk to thee about me cat."
The vet says, "Is it a tom?"
The Yorkshireman replies, "Nay, I've browt it wi me."
-----------
A Yorkshireman's dog dies and as it was a favourite pet, he decides to have
a gold statue made by a jeweller to remember the dog by.
He says, "Can tha mek us a gold statue of yon dog?"
The jeweller asks, "D'ya want it 18 carat?"
The Yorkshireman replies, "Naw, I want it chewin' a bone, yer daft bugger!"

The last is always the best ...........

Bloke from Barnsley with piles asks chemist, "Nah then lad, does tha sell
ar*e cream?"
The chemist replies, "Aye lad, Magnum or Cornetto?"

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Creative Signs:

Both funny & frightening:
 Click here
 Click here
 Click here
 Click here
 Click here
 Click here
 Click here
 Click here
 Click here
 Click here
 Click here
 Click here
 Click here

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Not Logical:

A young law student, having failed his Law exam, goes up to his crusty old
professor,
who is renowned for his razor-sharp legal mind.

Student: "Sir, do you really understand everything about this subject?"

Professor: "Actually, I probably do. Otherwise I wouldn't be a professor,
would I?"

Student: "OK. So Iâd like to ask you a question. If you can give me the
correct answer,
I will accept my mark as it is. If you can't give me the correct answer,
however, you'll have to give me an "A".

Professor: "Hmmmm, alright. So what’s the question?"

Student: "What is legal but not logical, logical but not legal, and neither
logical nor legal?

The professor wracks his famous brain, but just can't crack the answer.
Finally he gives up and changes the student's failing mark into an "A" as
agreed, and the student goes away, very pleased.

The professor continues to wrack his brain over the question all afternoon,
but still canât get the answer. So finally he calls in a group of his
brightest students and tells them he has a really, really tough question to
answer: "What is legal but not logical, logical but not legal, and neither
logical nor legal?

To the professor's surprise (and embarrassment), all the students
immediately raise their hands.

"All right" says the professor and asks his favourite student to answer

"It's quite easy, sir" says the student "You see, you are 75 years old and
married to a 30 year old woman, which is legal, but not logical. Your wife
has a 22 year old lover, which is logical, but not legal. And your wife's
lover failed his exam but you've just given him an "A", which is neither
legal, nor logical."

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A little Naval Aviation history:

Great Video. NAVY'S PBY-5A Catalina - Interesting Video.
Large crew and only two engines.
| A little Naval Aviation history...it was an 80 knot marvel, took off at
80 knots, climbed at 80 knots, cruised at 80 knots and landed at 80 knots.
Love the sound of the Pratt Whitney engines.

Truly, this unique plane and its skilled crews were the unsung heroes of
WWII. They played a key role in the Pacific war. The Navy PBY had no wing
flaps.  The pilot used no gauges.  He was expected to look out the windows.
 It was the flight engineer that had the gauges.  There was a cook and
kitchen on board because the plane flew long missions.  The plane was
sectioned off with water tight doors between different areas so that if it
went down, then not all areas would be flooded. We see a lot on the
restorations of WWII era bombers and fighters, but this one is something
quite unusual. The story of  PBY-5A CATALINA  (Strawberry 5) discovery and
restoration for the US Navy museum in San Diego. It was the only remaining
intact PBY 5 Catalina remaining in the World, and it was discovered in
South Africa. PBY "STRAWBERRY 5" WAS THE PLANE THAT FOUND THE JAPANESE
CARRIERS AT THE BATTLE OF MIDWAY WHICH BECAME THE TURNING POINT IN THE
PACIFIC THEATER OF WWII.
 Click here

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If the campaigning seems a bit long:

Aphorisms.
If God wanted us to vote, he would have given us candidates.~Jay Leno.
The problem with political jokes is they get elected.~Henry Cate, VII.
We hang the petty thieves and appoint the great ones to public
office~Aesop.
If we got one-tenth of what was promised to us in these State of the Union
speeches, there wouldn't be any inducement to go to heaven.~Will Rogers.
Politicians are the same all over. They promise to build a bridge even
where there is no river.~Nikita Khrushchev.
When I was a boy I was told that anybody could become President; I'm
beginning to believe it.~Clarence Darrow.
Why pay money to have your family tree traced; go into politics and your
opponents will do it for you.~Author unknown.
Politicians are people who, when they see light at the end of the tunnel,
go out and buy some more tunnel.~John Quinton.
Politics is the gentle art of getting votes from the poor and campaign
funds from the rich, by promising to protect each from the other.~Oscar
Ameringer.
A politician is a fellow who will lay down your life for his country.~ Tex
Guinan.
I have come to the conclusion that politics is too serious a matter to be
left to the politicians.~Charles de Gaulle.
Instead of giving a politician the keys to the city, it might be better to
change the locks.~Doug Larson.
There ought to be one day -- just one -- when there is open season on
senators.~Will Rogers.
My favorite (drum roll) I offer my opponents a bargain: If they will stop
telling lies about us, I will stop telling the truth about them.~Adlai
Stevenson, campaign speech, 1952.

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Talking Dog:

A young jackaroo from outback Queensland goes off to university, but
halfway through the semester he has squandered all of his money. He calls
home.

'Dad,' he says, 'you won't believe what modern education is
developing...they actually have a program here in Brisbane that will teach
our dog Ol' Blue how to talk.'

'That's amazing!' his Dad says. 'How do I get Ol' Blue in that program?'

'Just send him down here with $2,000,' the young jackaroo says, 'I'll get
him in the course.'

So his father sends the dog and $2,000.

About two-thirds through the semester, the money again runs out. The boy
calls home.

'So how's Ol' Blue doing, son?' his father wants to know.
'Awesome! Dad, he's talking up a storm.. But you just won't believe this.
They've had such good results with talking, they've begun to teach the
animals how to read.'

'Read?' exclaims his father. 'No kidding! How do we get Ol' Blue in that
program?'

'Just send $4,500. I'll get him in the class.'

The money promptly arrives. But our hero has a problem. At the end of the
year, his father will find out the dog can neither talk nor read.

So he shoots the dog. When he arrives home at the end of the year, his
father is all excited.

'Where's Ol' Blue? I just can't wait to talk with him, and see him read
something!'

'Dad,' the boy says, 'I have some grim news. Yesterday morning, just before
we left to drive home, Ol' Blue was in the living room, kicked back in the
recliner, reading the Wall Street Journal.
Then he suddenly turned to me and asked, 'So, is your daddy still bonking
that little redhead barmaid at the pub?''

The father groans and whispers, 'I hope you shot that bastard before he
talks to your Mother!'

'I sure did, Dad!'

'That's my boy!'
The kid went on to be a successful lawyer

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S*xual activties:

 The frequency of s*xual activity of senior males depends on where they 
were born. Statistics just released from Statistics Canada and The  United
Nations B.O.H. Team, revealing that:

 English men between 60 and 78 years of age, will on average, have s*x  two
to three times per week, (and a small number a lot more), whereas  Japanese
men, in exactly the same age group, will have s*x only once or  twice per
year if they are lucky.

 This has come as very upsetting news to me and to most of my friends,
 as none of us had any idea we were Japanese.

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Escherian Stairwell:
 Click here

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Weird World War II Winning Moves:

The Bat Bomb -
 Click here

Lace Curtains -
 Click here

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DANCE WITH MY PARTNER. JUST BRILLIANT:

This is LOVE! This is entertainment!
Make sure to watch everything, including the dogs legs!

I'm loving it! Enjoy,
 Click here

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Immigration MUST be controlled!: [XXX]
 Click here

If these guys emigrate we are in big trouble (SOME OF US)

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When Autos were works of art !:
 Click here

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Working With Snow:
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here
 Click here Click here

I can't believe the sheer size of these! Amazing!

Gorgeous Use of Snow
The annual Snow Sculpture contest in Breckenridge, Colorado, attracts
contestants from all over the world.

Talk About A "Snow Job"...!!!!
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Truckies Tight Corner -- photo:
 Click here

It would of been harder to get through the left hand corner that he had
just come through (See top Left of photo).

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Man's Best Friends!:
 Click here Click here
What... you were expecting dog pictures?

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New album release..:
 Click here
Make sure you read the song titles

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Cloud Tsunami:
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here
 Click here

No wonder they had all that rain up there last week..great photos.

Last Friday, a cloud tsunami startled the residents of New South Wales,
Australia. Technically a shelf cloud, those on Bondi Beach saw what
appeared to be a massive, several-kilometer-long wave stretching across the
sky. The Australian Bureau off Meteorology issued warnings to the
surrounding areas due to thunderstorms, heavy rains, and strong winds.

The shelf cloud is created by a cold outflow from a thunderstorm lifting
the moist air very abruptly, it is an outflow feature from a thunderstorm,
forecaster Christopher Webb explained to The Daily Telegraph. When the rain
from the thunderstorm comes vertically down it drags the air with it, it
spreads horizontally and forms a gust front, you get the humid air being
lifted abruptly from the outflow of the thunderstorm.

More info : Wikipedia (h/t: dailytelegraph)

Image credits: Richard Hirst,  aliialii , Will Reid,  guy Sebastian, Parker
Mason, Rohan Kelly.

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Origin of the Texas Longhorn Logo Design:

I have always been fascinated by trivia and I thought you might be
interested in this bit of trivia as well.
Where did the Texas Longhorn logo idea come from?
 Click here

I did not know this!
 Click here

My duty is to teach you something new every day. Job done.

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Bette Midler is "so right":
 Click here

This has to be the "winner of the week"
You go, Bette!

"I haven't left my house in days.
I watch the news channels incessantly.

All the news stories are about the election; all the commercials are for
Viagra and Cialis.

Election, erection, election, erection - - either way it's all about
getting screwed!"

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TEA & CRUMPETS: [XXX]

The Vicar's wife has invited me to meet the charming parish ladies for tea
and crumpets at the church hall. I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO WEAR !
 Click here

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Links & Photos:
 Click here Click here Click here

Family Ride
 Click here

Lot of History Here
 Click here

Feeding Wild Australian Parrots
 Click here

Cooper Loves Ice Cream
 Click here

Lost in the Fifties
 Click here

Lost in the Sixties
 Click here

Lost in the Seventies
 Click here

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20 X Photos that went Viral:
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here
 Click here Click here

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Only in Queensland:
 Click here

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The Australian Government's New Symbol:
 Click here

THE AUSTRALIAN GOVERNMENT'S NEW SYMBOL IS A CONDOM.

Because it more accurately reflects the government's political stance.

A condom allows for inflation,

Halts production,

Destroys the next generation,

Protects a bunch of d*cks,

Gives you a sense of security, while you're actually being screwed !

Damn, it just doesn't get more accurate than that !

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The Kicking Machine:
 Click here

The Kicking Machine

Ever felt like kicking yourself? Tom Haywood, of Croatan, knew that feeling
and figured other folks might sometimes feel that way, too. So during the
summer of 1937, he and local handyman Wilber Herring built a contraption
that would deliver a good, swift kick to the seat of the pants of any
willing recipient.

The simple machine consisted of a hand-operated crank connected by a belt
and pulleys to a wheel. Four spokes, each with an old shoe attached, jutted
out from the wheel. To get the boot, the operator just bent over and turned
the crank.

A Craven County commissioner, Haywood said he intended the kicking machine
for his personal use, to perform the needed rebuke to my conscience. He
kept it behind his house. But so many folks heard about the machine, and
wanted to use it, that Haywood finally moved it to a shelter in front of
his general store, on highway U.S. 70, about ten miles east of New Bern.

According to old newspaper accounts, the kicking machine got a good workout
on Sunday afternoons, from motorists going home from the beach. But at
night time, the machine really got cranking. A lot of folks donât want
people to know they need a kick, so they wait until I close up at night and
then come around, Haywood said. Late at night I can hear the machine just a
squeaking outside.

Haywoodâs kicking machine soon became a local tourist attraction and,
eventually, a national curiosity. It booted behinds free of charge for
decades. Several North Carolina governors are said to have used the
machine, along with the baron and baroness of Bern, Switzerland. Local
people say that popular television comedian Lucille Ball once got a kick
out of the machine. And in 1941 President Harry S. Truman inspected it,
while visiting the nearby Marine Corps Air Station at Cherry Point.
Pictures of the kicking machine appeared in newspapers and magazines across
the United States, and in other countries. In October 1937 Haywood
demonstrated its proper use in a Universal newsreel. That same year, just
for fun, he formed the Self-Kicking Club of America to preserve our sense
of humour and to remind us that, if we kick ourselves more, we will kick
others less.

Haywood died in 1955, but his niece and her husband continued to run his
store, and the kicking machine, until the 1980s. By then, U.S. 70 had
become a busy four-lane highway, and the kicking machine got little
attention. In 1993 the family donated the beloved contraption to the North
Carolina Museum of History.

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Links & Photos:
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here

10 Dumb Crimes Solved by Facebook
 Click here

The History of Rock (in 15 minutes)
 Click here

Touch (Brilliant)
 Click here

Hometown Battlefield (Song starts at 1.30)
 Click here

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23 X Only in Israel Photos:
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here

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Marriage Counsellor:
 Click here

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Serena & Maria:
 Click here

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 5 X Hero Dogs:
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here

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Hong Kong:
 Click here Click here

Because of historical, political, and geographical reasons, only 23.7% of
Hong Kong’s land is developed, out of which only 6.8% land is used for
housing. No wonder Hong Kong is one of the most densely populated places on
the planet, with more than 6,400 people packed into every square kilometre.

Many of the city’s 7 million residents live in high rise apartments, that
towers Hong Kong’s brilliant skyline. There are a total of 6588 high-rise
buildings in all of Hong Kong, far surpassing New York’s 818 buildings,
making Hong Kong a true skyscr*per city.

Living conditions, however, are a lot to be desired for with people living
like dogs in cages. In order to capture this maddeningly dense and
repetitive shoe-box type claustrophobic residential structure, German
photographer Michael Wolf has produced a beautiful series called
Architecture of Density.

From the Ground -
 Click here

From a Drone -
 Click here

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Howling Dog Phone Ringer:
 Click here

22nd, October, 1932 - A Seattle woman complained that her phone never rang,
but she could tell when someone was trying to call her, because her dog
would start howling in the yard. The telephone repair guy investigated.
Realized the dog wasn't psychic. Instead, there was a short in the line,
and as the dog was chained to the ground wire, he got zapped every time,
someone called.

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Insects Don't Get Much Love:
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here

Insects don't get much love. But this hasn't always been the situation. If
we look back to 1932, we find an example of a spider that achieved
overnight celebrity status, with the media producing daily reports of its
adventures. It's the curious case of the spider in a clock.

The Spider First Noticed
The spider's rise to fame began on the morning of November 20, 1932 at 552
Parker Ave in Barberton, Ohio, a suburb of Akron. Louise Thompson rolled
over in bed, turned off her alarm clock, and then noticed a "tiny black
dot" moving across the face of the timepiece.

Closer examination by her husband, Cyril, revealed that the dot was a small
spider. It had somehow gotten into the space between the face of the clock
and the glass, and it was attempting to spin a web between the minute and
hour hands. It succeeded in briefly attaching a fine thread of gossamer
between the two hands, but as the minute hand slowly advanced the thread
broke. No matter. The spider climbed up the face of the clock and began its
effort all over again, only to have the thread broken for a second time.
The couple watched as the spider continued to repeat this cycle over and
over.

The next morning the spider was still there, still trying to build its
ill-fated web. And it remained there the day after, and the day after that.

The Thompsons shared the story of the clock-battling spider with their
neighbours, and soon people started dropping by to see it. Eventually,
someone contacted the media.

Media Fame
By the time a reporter first saw the spider â around December 7, 1932 â
the insect had grown to the size of an ordinary house spider, and the hands
of the clock were covered with fine threads.

How had the spider managed to grow without any obvious source of food? And
how had it gotten into the clock in the first place? These were the
mysteries that the spider presented.

The reporter interviewed the Thompson's two children. Young Tommy thought
the spider was boring, but his sister, Mary Louise, was fascinated by it,
admiring the way it kept at its task, despite constant defeat. She said,
"He must be awfully brave."

Evidently much of the American public agreed with Mary Louise, because
after the first story about the spider, distributed by the Associated
Press, appeared in papers, interest in the arachnid swelled. The media
responded by providing daily details of its adventures.

Science Weighs In
On December 9, Harold Madison, director of the Cleveland Museum of Natural
History, offered his opinion on the mystery of the spider's size. He
dismissed the idea that the insect had grown inside the clock, insisting
that the tiny spider first seen must have been one of the current spider's
offspring. She had probably eaten it, he said, as well as the rest of her
babies. Furthermore, he added, "It is also possible that her mate is inside
the clock, and she obtains food by eating him."

The suggestion of cannibalism only made the story more sensational in the
eyes of the media.

A reporter then got the idea of taking the clock, and its spider prisoner,
over to the University of Akron where he presented it to biologist Walter
Charles Kraatz.

Kraatz peered at the spider through a microscope and declared that he saw
two "circular clusters" on the face of the clock. These appeared to be
eggs, and if they hatched, he suggested, the offspring "likely would take
up the blind, relentless fight to spread a web over the hands of the
clock." Or the spider would "eat its young in a cannibalistic orgy." Either
way, the battle of arachnid versus clock seemed destined to continue for a
while.

After examination of the clock, Kraatz also theorized that the spider had
entered the timepiece through a small opening in the back, made its way
through the machinery, and then got out onto the face via a small crevice
at the shaft which bore the hands.

Meanwhile, the spider was still at its never-ending task of trying to
connect the two hands of the clock, oblivious to the media storm around it.
Kraatz noted that he thought it appeared to be weakening, but he assured
the press that "every movement of the spider, would be closely watched in
the interest of science."

Protests

Not everyone was taken with the spider in the clock. Some were appalled by
the entire spectacle. In particular, the members of the Akron Humane
Society deplored what they perceived to be a case of arachnid imprisonment
(albeit self-imprisonment).

On December 10, an agent of the Society, G.W. Dilley, issued an
announcement to the press, declaring that he would permit Kraatz one week
to study the spider, then he would demand its release. He conceded that the
spider would probably die if let out in the cold weather, but he
nevertheless insisted that it was cruel to allow the insect to continue to
suffer in its "clock-face prison."

Kraatz responded that the spider was not suffering, because it had "a low
type of nervous sensibility." Also, he assured the public that it wasn't
starving because itâs species could survive an entire winter without
eating, living on stored-up body tissue.

Cyril Thompson, owner of the clock, evidently hoping to avoid being branded
as a spider torturer, added that he had always been in favour of freeing
the spider, but hadn't done so because it would require taking the entire
clock apart.

The Spider's End

The Human Society never needed to put their spider rescue plan into action.
Despite earlier suggestions that the spider might go on battling the clock
indefinitely, itâs time was actually fast running out.

On December 11 it ceased its web building, and retreated beneath a small
web built along the outer edge of the clock face, leaving behind a
"shambles of broken strands" on the hands.

Hoping to allay fears that the spider had died, Kraatz told the press that
it had probably entered a period of winter hibernation, and that if kept
warm it could survive until the spring.

However, after two days of inactivity everyone began to suspect that the
spider was, in fact, dead. So on December 13 the clock was disassembled,
and, sure enough, the lifeless body of the spider tumbled out.

Obituaries for the brave spider ran in numerous papers. They noted that
although the insect had died, it had, in its death, finally defeated the
clock against which it had battled, by causing the clock to be taken apart.

But although the mechanical march of time had been temporarily stilled, it
couldn't be stopped altogether. The same obituaries noted that the clock
was soon reassembled, and started ticking again.

Perspective
Over a month after the spider's death, articles about it continued to
appear in papers as far-flung as the China Press. So what exactly was the
appeal of the spider?

As told by the media, the spider's predicament had all the elements of a
classic fable. Many articles noted the similarity between the spider in the
clock and the spider that had once inspired the Scottish king Robert the
Bruce.

The story of Bruce and the Spider (first put in print by Sir Walter Scott
in 1828) told that while on the run from the English, the Scottish king had
hidden in a dark cave, where he spent his time watching a spider building a
web. Inspired by the spider's unceasing effort, Bruce rallied his spirit
and went on to defeat the English at the Battle of Bannockburn.

So the spider served as a metaphor for the universal struggle against time
and hardship. Despite suffering constant defeat, the spider got up and kept
on trying, "unmindful of the insurmountable odds." The imprisonment in the
clock added added a modern, mechanical twist to the fable, updating it for
the 1930s.

To underscore this moral lesson, one poet (John A. Twamley of Rochester,
New York) set the spider's struggle to verse:

In the city known as Akron,
In the state of O-hio,
On a clock face there's a spider
Spinning web threads to and fro.

Back and forth he keeps on going
From clock hand unto clock hand,
And why his threads should keep abreaking
He of course can't understand...

When we men meet with reverses
We should keep this thought in stock:
That 'til death we should keep striving
Like the spider in the clock

Recall that all this happened in 1932, during the depths of the Great
Depression, and the popular appeal of the spider becomes easier to
understand. Times were hard, and the spider offered a lesson of
perseverance in the face of setbacks.

But despite all the fuss made about the spider, there were limits to the
public's appreciation for an insect. For instance, no one ever bothered to
give it a name. It was simply referred to as the "spider in a clock." Nor
was there ever any indication of a memorial or funeral service for the
brave insect. The location of its final resting place went unrecorded. It
probably ended up in a University of Akron trashcan.

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[ End friday humour ]

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