Saturday, October 19, 2013

More dumb stuff in the News

Hong Kong holds a traditional "Hungry Ghost" festival every August, in which people burn fake money on top of ancestors' graves to support their afterlife styles. A weaker economy and inflation seem to have upped the ante for the gifts. An August Wall Street Journal dispatch noted that the denominations of burnable "currency" sold in stores have gone up, including one "valued" at one trillion Hong Kong dollars (US$130 billion). (Some festival-goers asked, sensibly, about how the ancestor could expect change from such a bill if he needed to make a small afterlife purchase.) 

The family of the great Native American Olympic athlete and Oklahoma native Jim Thorpe (1888-1953) was so disappointed that the then-governor of Oklahoma would not properly honor Thorpe on his death that one faction of his family moved the body to Pennsylvania, where he had no known ties but where municipal officials eagerly offered to name a town after him. Since then, Jim Thorpe, Pa. (current population, 4,800), has withstood legal challenges seeking to return the body to Oklahoma, including a recent federal court decision upholding the entire town as a Native American "museum." One grandson said that Thorpe spoke to him at a sweat lodge in Texas in 2010, telling him to leave the body in Jim Thorpe, with "no more pain created in my name." 

Kopi Luwak coffee begun in 1993 with the first reports that a super-premium market existed for coffee beans digested by certain Asian civet cats, collected, washed and brewed. In August the American Chemical Society reported that a "gas chromatography and mass spectrometry" test had finally been developed to assure buyers that their $227-a-pound Kopi Luwak beans had, indeed, been excreted by genuine Asian civets. (Thus, Kopi Luwak drinkers, at up to $80 a cup in California, can sip their brews without fear of being ripped off.) 

There's more, but I can only take so much at a time... Make it a good day, hear?

Today's Reflection:
My opinions may have changed -but I am still right!

Live Long and Prosper...

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