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Mother Jones on mints for your vagina

Jen Phillips at Mother Jones has an essay about Linger, an “internal feminine flavoring.” 
Linger-Mints A little digging revealed that Linger is made/distributed by a company called Admints, which just happens to make trade show mints.  And the Linger samples just happen to have have the exact same shape, taste, and ingredients as Admint’s sample mints. So how does Linger manage to pass off breath mints as vaginal Tic Tacs in $7.99 packs?  Despite the salacious creation story and testimonials on its site (”It gets a little warm as it starts to dissolve which took just under an hour. Then, it is SO good!!”), the mint is labeled “for novelty use only.”  This is a common practice in the sex-products industry, explains Charlie Glickman, the education program manager at Good Vibrations.  It gives manufacturers some cover if something goes awry, he explains. “They could say, ‘It’s just a novelty toy. You weren’t actually expecting to use this were you?’”  And if you actually do expect to use Linger to “flavor the woman in a manner that is safe and effective,” be warned: its primary ingredient is sugar, which is not safe for the vagina.  It messes up the pH and can lead to a really painful yeast infection, a condition that definitely doesn’t make someone want to “linger.”
Vagina mints (Via Sociological Images)

Royal Society puts 60 seminal scientific papers online

The Royal Society of London for the Improvement of Natural Knowledge (aka The Royal Society) is celebrating is 350th birthday next year. Spun out in part of the fantastically cool Invisible College, the Royal Society's members have included Isaac Newton, Robert Hooke, Charles Darwin, Tim Berners-Lee, Lise Meitner, Stephen Hawking, Marie Curie, Francis Crick, and countless other smart folks. The organization kicks off its big anniversary year with Trailblazing, a new interactive timeline that includes 60 choice articles from the journal Philosophical Transactions. From the Royal Society's announcement :
 Wikipedia Commons 9 9D Sprat Leading scientists and historians have chosen 60 articles from amongst the 60,000 published since the journal first began in 1665. Trailblazing will make the original manuscripts available online for the first time alongside fascinating insights from modern-day experts who are continuing the work of scientific giants such as Newton, Hooke, Faraday and Franklin and making vital new breakthroughs of their own in areas such as genetics, physics, climate change and medicine.

Highlights include:

• The gruesome account of an early blood transfusion (1666)

• Captain James Cook's explanation of how he protected his crew from scurvy aboard HMS Resolution (1776)

• Stephen Hawking's early writing on black holes (1970)

• Benjamin Franklin's account of flying a kite in a storm to identify the electrical nature of lightning - the Philadelphia Experiment (1752)

• Sir Isaac Newton's landmark paper on the nature of light and colour (1672)

• A scientific study of a young Mozart confirming him as a musical child genius (1770)

• The Yorkshire cave discovery of the fossilized remains of elephant, tiger, bear and hyena heralding the study of deep time (1822)

Royal Society's Trailblazing (Thanks, Bob Pescovitz!)

Image: "Frontispeice to Thomas Sprat's A History of the Royal Society (1667)"

Arrington ends CrunchPad project

Mike Arrington writes that the CrunchPad project has self-destructed over greed, jealously and miscommunication. Short version: the hardware partner tried to screw him and it is now lawsuit time. This is a real shame, because the low-end tablet had a great design, was open to hackers, and represented a valiant independent effort to break into a market dominated by enormous corporations.

Report: Sarah Palin "bus tour" a hoax, more like "private jet tour"

Sarah Palin's "bus tour" to promote her new book simply isn't. Joe McGinniss reports she's in fact flying around America on a private jet, specifically a luxurious "Gulfstream II 12-passenger jet rented from Universal Jet Aviation of Boca Raton, Florida, at a cost of more than $4,000 per hour."

World's cheapest Michelin-starred restaurant

After reading about Michelin's famous guide and its undercover inspectors in a recent issue of The New Yorker, it was fun to learn about the cheapest restaurant that has been awarded a highly-coveted star, "a hole-in-the-wall canteen in Hong Kong that offers dishes for less than $1.50."

Gay-bashing woman humiliated for wearing hideous skirt

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An angry loser (right) came to Syracuse University to make a fool of herself by spreading pathetic hatred and was treated to a happy mutant style stunt by this smiling student, named Chris Pesto (left).

I decided that because this woman thought it was okay to make me feel uncomfortable in my home, I would retaliate and make her feel just as uncomfortable, if not more.

This woman was wearing a ankle-length corduroy skirt, which, as we all know, is a fashion nono. So, in order to make her feel uncomfortable, I stood next to her and held a sign that said Corduroy skirts are a sin! I don't think I have ever drawn so much attention in my life. SO many people asked to take a picture with me, I got laughs, high fives and there were the few that even cursed off the woman standing behind me.

As I drew interest to what was going on with myself and the woman with the hateful sign, I started to draw a crowd that stood with me in support. Before I knew it I had 100+ people holding signs for gay rights asking people to honk their horns to support. I was interviewed by a news station, and more than 5 student organization papers, and the post standard of syracuse.

I never expected anybody to come stand by me and support and I appreciate it so much that everyone came! It meant so much and it proved to those ignorant people that we aren't afraid, and we will put up a fight.

I'm proud that Syracuse has such a homosexual friendly community.

Corduroy Skirts are a Sin

17 particularly peculiar Beach Boys songs


Keith Phipps assembled a list of "17 particularly peculiar Beach Boys songs." They may be peculiar, but they're also a lot of fun to listen to.

(Via Michel Leddy, who asks "how could he have left out “I’m Bugged at My Old Man”?)

Collin Cunningham of MAKE builds an infrared heart monitor


I love the electronics videos Collin Cunningham produces for Make: Online. Not only does he describe his projects in an entertaining way, he also scores the trippy music for them.

After checking out a few projects involving IR heart monitors, I decided to have a go at the interface myself. Seen above are the results of my first experimentation with pulse oximetry. Getting the setup up and running satisfactorily required a bit more time and tinkering than I'd expected - especially after reversing a premature mod to my emitter/detector pair. The next version I try will either use a higher output emitter (see Charles Martin's version) or some amplification hardware (as used in Meng Li's sensor).

Collin's Lab: Infrared heart sensor

The poster that convinced Switzerland to ban minarets

stopp_poster.png Taken from RYTC's photo of a billboard. There are currently four minarets in all of Switzerland, each pointed threateningly at (from?) one quarter of the nation. The poster's minarets resemble those of the Hagia Sophia, a nice touch given the mindset at hand. The eyes, however, resemble those of David Bowie, emerging from some very serious moonlight. Previously.

Jesus on clothes iron

Mary Jo Coady of Methuen, Massachusetts spotted Jesus Christ on the bottom of her iron. Apparently, seeing Jesus on the iron has reminded Coady that "life is going to be good." From the Associated Press:
 Images 2009 11 27 Image5801353 The 44-year-old Coady was raised Catholic. She and her two college-age daughters agree that the image looks like Jesus and is proof that "he's listening."

Coady tells The Eagle-Tribune she hopes her story will inspire others during the holidays. She says she plans to keep the iron in a closet and buy a new one.

"Mass. Woman Sees Image Of Jesus On Her Iron"

Scientists engineer fake meat

Scientists in the Netherlands successfully engineered pork-like meat in a lab recently, according to the Telegraph. No report on how it tastes yet, but it's possible that faux beef could be gracing our dinner tables within five years.

1971 Woolworth TV commercial for LPs


TV commercial from another time. (What is the music playing in the background?) (Via Bedazzled!)

Concept design for gun-shaped camera

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This design for a gun-shaped camera is unlikely to be mass-produced. It looks easy enough to make one with a 3D printer, though.

Report: US to order 30 - 35,000 more troops to Afghanistan

President Obama is expected to order 30-35,000 more troops into Afghanistan, to "finish the job," over the next twelve to eighteen months. If the plan is implemented, US troop levels in that country will have tripled under his presidency.

Cute purses made out of coconuts

3801814923_e7236ff8bf_b.jpg Erik of Afrigadget found these cute bags made out of coconuts on Lamu Island, off the coast of Kenya, while traveling with his daughter. As he points out, it's one example of a great way for locals to make money from tourists using local resources that might otherwise become garbage. Coconut + Zippers = Handbags