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Sunday, May 06, 2007

A Week of Stranger Things

  1. News tycoon Robert Maxwell ate grapes by lowering a bunch into his mouth, stripping the fruit and taking it out leaving only the stalks.
  2. The city of Palermo in Sicily employs more than 100 bus drivers none of whom hold a driving licence.
  3. The iPod was designed by a British citizen, Jonathan Ive, from Chingford, Essex.
  4. Using a password with at least 20 characters statistically means it would take longer than the entire history of the universe for a hacker to find your password using a "brute force" attack.
  5. Computer chips could run faster thanks to a process that copies nature's creation of snowflakes.
  6. Beer can be used to generate power.
  7. So can sun towers.
  8. Sunscreen is the least effective option of sun protection.
  9. A BBC correspondent becomes the first woman to swim in public in Saudi Arabia.
  10. Abortion is illegal in Ireland except where the mother's life is threatened by a medical condition or suicide.
  11. A test is being sold on the internet that enables parents to check the sex of their unborn baby at just six weeks.
  12. Pandas in captivity don't need "Viagra, panda porn videos, or other previously tried artificial stimulants" to contemplate a spot of rumpy-pumpy after all.
  13. Apes communicate with gestures that have different meanings depending on the context - a chimpanzee with an extended arm and open hand may be begging for food, asking a female chimp for sex or reconciling with a male after a fight.
  14. The goat who became an internet phenomenon after "marrying" a Sudanese man was named Rose.
  15. Men bitten by the Brazilian wandering spider can experience long and painful erections - a condition known as priapism.
  16. Maggots can treat MRSA.
  17. Blushing can be treated by cutting the nerve that creates the red flush in the face, neck or upper chest.
  18. A woman is campaigning to raise awareness of a rare condition which has left her with 11 stone (70kg) legs.
  19. A disused Boeing 737 was abandoned in a busy road of the Indian city of Mumbai (Bombay).
  20. And then it disappeared.

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