Friday, May 3, 2013

Various & Sundry: Now with more random animal drama!

It's been a busy week work-wise as a deadline looooms for the ecumenical version (actually versions) of Confirm not Conform, which of course means I have more than the usual number of goofy links to share. I'm just going to go for the random, here. You sort out the themes.

My favorite grammar heresy, the Singular They, gets a thumbs up from the Grumpy Grammarian, asking, "are we really to heed [William Strunk's] aesthetic sensibilities over Shakespeare’s or Thackeray’s?" Let's just consider that a rhetorical question.

Here's a lead you don't read every day: "An English coroner is being asked to decide why a man was in the chimney of a law firm where he was found dead." Well, yes, that does raise some questions.

You also don't hear about pot-sniffing moose every time you turn around.

In other wild animal encounters, Nancy Kho describes How to Maximize the Drama Inherent in a Wild Turkey Encounter. That's a wild turkey as in an actual wild turkey, not Wild Turkey like glug-glug. Although Wild Turkey might indeed maximize the drama inherent in a wild turkey encounter. No mention of it, though.

OK, I do seem to be sensing a theme as we turn to glow in the dark sheep.
Scientists in Uruguay have announced the world's first genetically-modified phosphorescent sheep. 
Nine sheep were born in October of 2012 at Uruguay's Institute of Animal Reproduction, an experiment conducted in conjunction with the Institut Pasteur. 
The scientists used a gene from a jellyfish, allowing them to produce a green fluorescent protein.

The scientists say the sheep developed normally. They claim there are no differences to their non-modified peers.
Well. Good for them, then. But they are kind of creepy, aren't they?

On the more serious side, two pieces that made me go yay:

First, four teenagers in Wilcox County, Georgia, finally were able to offer the high school's first integrated prom. Yes, you read right. 2013. They had an integrated prom. So kudos to the four girls who finally broke through. It's still hard to wrap your brain around, though, isn't it?

Also kudos to the principal who fired security guards at his elementary school so that he could hire art teachers. He took a real risk, but it looks like it's paying huge dividends.

And for your own decision-making needs, take a look at the Disapproval Matrix, which is "one way to separate haterade from productive feedback." Very useful. Who are you listening to?

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