Woman's headphones explode while traveling on airplane

An unidentified woman flying from Beijing to Melbourne was sleeping on the plane, listening to music on her headphones, when she heard a loud explosion. Then her face began to burn, according to the Australian Transport Safety Bureau.

About two hours into the flight while sleeping, the passenger heard a loud explosion. “As I went to turn around I felt burning on my face,” she said. “I just grabbed my face which caused the headphones to go around my neck.

“I continued to feel burning so I grabbed them off and threw them on the floor. They were sparking and had small amounts of fire.

“As I went to stamp my foot on them the flight attendants were already there with a bucket of water to pour on them. They put them into the bucket at the rear of the plane.” The battery and cover were both melted and stuck to the floor of the aircraft.

The burning headphones – and their toxic fumes and smoke – had passengers coughing throughout the rest of the flight. They left the woman with burns and blisters.

And the cause of the explosion? Batteries of course – nothing new these days. Click here for the full story.

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Uber driver snaps after taking crap from spoiled brat

After waiting and waiting for a passenger in Chicago, an Uber driver is about to leave when two young women slide into his back seat. One of them immediately gets on his case.

"You weren't at our location, Jesus Christ," she says. In reality, he was across the street because the corner that she was at was too crowded with other cars.

She goes on to berate him, and then... "she broke me," he says on his YouTube description.

"Get the fuck out of my car," he tells the women.

"Are you joking?" she says.

"No, I'm dead serious, get the fuck out."

"Oh, I don't think so. Nope."

The women do not budge, and he gets more and more irritated. One of the women suddenly turns sweet, asking him in a syrupy voice if he'll please just take them home. Her entitled friend, however, is offensive. Her strong bitchy Valley Girl accent makes it hard to tell if she's drunk or just spoiled rotten.

Yes, the driver loses it and calls her a "bitch" and a "cunt," but it's easy to see how someone can "snap," as he also says in his Youtube description, with such an obnoxious brat in his car. Finally a bystander comes over to try to smooth things out, but isn't much help. The driver ends up telling the bystander to close the door, he's going home, and if the woman doesn't get out of his car, she'll have to be dropped off at his house. Read the rest

Muhammad Ali Jr detained AGAIN at airport today

Unbelievably, after being held for hours at the Ft Lauderdale-Hollywood airport and questioned about his religion two weeks ago, Muhammad Ali Jr was detained at another airport today. This time, it was at Reagan National Airport, boarding a domestic flight on his way to Fort Lauderdale.

Spurred by the first ludicrous detainment he endured, Ali had spent yesterday testifying in front of congress about "putting a stop to such blatant discrimination," according to Miami New Times.

Ali was then turned away from his flight today after being questioned about his date-of-birth, social security number and mother's name. It wasn't until he pulled out his passport – which one isn't supposed to need for a domestic flight – that they allowed him to board his plane.

The family's lawyer, Chris Mancini, tells New Times that Ali Jr. had been flying around the country using a valid Illinois State ID (not a driver's license), which expires in 2019. The card had worked fine all month.

Yesterday, Ali Jr. testified about his February detention in front of a United States Senate Democratic Subcommittee. And one day after publicly criticizing Donald Trump and his Muslim travel ban, his ID magically stopped working at Reagan National.

"This was directly in retaliation for what happened," Mancini says. "I don’t care what they say. Homeland Security needs to explain why, two days ago, he could fly, but all of a sudden two days later, he can't fly."

On his way home, he found out he was coincidentally on the same flight as Florida Rep. Read the rest

News anchors honor Notorious B.I.G. by slipping his lyrics into traffic report

Yesterday was the 20-year mark of Notorious B.I.G.'s death, and to pay tribute, Atlanta's "Action News" anchors Fred Blankenship and Mark Arum on WSB-TV ingeniously slipped in a bunch of Biggie's lyrics into their traffic report.

A couple of them include: "I know you thought birthdays were the worst days but Thursdays might be the worse day," and "Ashley, Ashley, Ashley, can’t you see / these downtown delays keep hypnotizin’ me."

How many more can you find?

P.S. This isn't new for the duo – last year they honored the late A Tribe Called Quest rapper Phife Dawg, which you can see here: Read the rest

House GOP approves bill allowing companies to force genetic testing on workers [See update]

[UPDATE 3/11/2017: Snopes reports that "HR 1313 does not allow employers to force all their workers to submit to genetic testing." Instead "H.R. 1313 states that employers may provide additional insurance premium discounts to workers who take part in their companies’ voluntary wellness programs. Once enrolled, the bill says, businesses are allowed to collect 'information about the manifested disease or disorder of a family member' of participating employees."

If you think your genetics are your own personal beeswax, think again. Amidst all the hoopla surrounding the Affordable Care Act this week, the House GOP quietly pushed forward a bill – HR 1313 – that would make it legal for employers to demand genetic testing from workers. Workers who refuse could be penalized for thousands of dollars.

On Wednesday, a House committee approved the bill with "all 22 Republicans supporting it and all 17 Democrats opposed," according to Business Insider.

"What this bill would do is completely take away the protections of existing laws," said Jennifer Mathis, director of policy and legal advocacy at the Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law, a civil rights group. In particular, privacy and other protections for genetic and health information in GINA and the 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act "would be pretty much eviscerated," she said.

And according to PLOS:

A May 16, 2016, ruling from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission laid the groundwork for penalizing employees who refuse to answer questions about their or their spouses’ health. This could amount to thousands of dollars a year, according to a report from the Kaiser Family Foundation.
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Watch: Kid crashes live weather forecast, predicts farts and toots

Jackson, Mississippi had some strange weather last Saturday – at least according to Houston, the energetic boy who leapt onto the WLBT weather set while meteorologist Patrick Ellis was in the middle of a forecast. After flapping his arms and cawing like a bird, and then appearing to fart a couple of times, Houston pointed at the weather map and said, "There are farts everywhere, and toots!"

According to TVSpy:

Meteorologist Patrick Ellis was part way through his forecast on Jackson, Ms. NBC affiliate WLBT when a kid, named Houston, stepped into the shot and began forecasting as only a small boy can.

WLBT later explained the station hosts a show with local lawyers that airs after the 6 p.m. Saturday newscast. Ellis says it’s not uncommon for the lawyers to bring their kids. One of those kids was Houston.

“This Saturday was a little different,” said Ellis. “This Saturday our friend Houston decided he wanted to be on television.”

Ellis took it all in stride, chuckling and talking to the boy as if it were all part of the normal weather routine. This is the kind of stuff that makes live TV so much fun to watch. Read the rest

Neanderthal dental DNA shows us the true paleo diet (we've got it a bit wrong)

If you're on the paleo diet, you might want to rethink what you're eating. Not all Neanderthals ate a meat-and-fat paleo diet. In fact, some were vegetarians.

In a recent study, researcher Laura Weyrich and her team, from the University of Adelaide in Australia, examined the dental plaque – and its DNA – of five Neanderthal skulls to see what these folks used to eat.

According to The Atlantic:

By harvesting and sequencing that DNA, Weyrich has shown that there was no such thing as a typical Neanderthal diet. One individual from Spy cave in Belgium mostly ate meat like woolly rhinoceros and wild sheep, as well as some edible mushrooms. But two individuals who lived in El Sidrón cave in Spain seemed to be entirely vegetarian. The team couldn’t find any traces of meat in their diet, which consisted of mushrooms, pine nuts, tree bark, and moss. The Belgian Neanderthals hunted; the Spanish ones foraged.

Weyrich admits that science still isn't clear on how much we need to eat before it shows up in DNA, or whether some foods show up in DNA more than others.

“We don’t know if we’re looking at their last meal or random food debris from the last ten years.”

But it seems a true paleo diet is simply foods in their natural state, whether it's a rump roast or a basket of sweet strawberries. Click here for the full story.

Photo: AguilaGib Read the rest

Trump confused (again!) in today's new tweet about Obama and Guantanamo

Trump just can't seem to get his facts right. This morning he tweeted, “122 vicious prisoners, released by the Obama Administration from Gitmo, have returned to the battlefield. Just another terrible decision!”

In reality, 93 percent – or 113 out of 122 – of those prisoners were released during the Bush administration, while only 9 were released under Obama's administration.

According to ABC:

According to a September 2016 report from the U.S. Office of the Director of National Intelligence, 113 of those 122 detainees who have been confirmed as “re-engaging” were released from Guantanamo Bay under the Bush administration.

Only nine of them were released during the Obama administration.

The tweet came less than an hour after a segment on "Fox and Friends" about Mohammed Tahar, aka Yasir al-Silmi, a former Guantanamo detainee who was killed by a U.S. air strike in Yemen last week. Tahar had been transferred from Guantanamo to his home country of Yemen Dec. 17, 2009, during the Obama administration.

Trump also calls Obama's releasing of detainees a "terrible decision," but the percentage of Obama-released prisoners returning to terrorist activity is lower than Bush-released prisoners. Only 6 percent of Obama-released prisoners returned to terrorism vs. 21 percent of Bush-released prisoners, according to Director of National Intelligence data.

This is the second time in just a few days that the anxious Trump has taken aim at former President Obama with flubbed facts. Over the weekend he accused Obama of tapping his phones, even though there is no evidence of that. Read the rest

Canadian citizen going to day spa in US turned away – needs immigrant visa

Canadian citizen Manpreet Kooner was on her way to a day spa in Vermont when she was stopped at the US border. The 30-year-old Montreal resident, who works at a science lab, was held for six hours before being denied entrance into the US.

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Bitcoin hits record high, worth more than ounce of gold for first time

Bitcoin reached a new high at $1,271 per bitcoin yesterday, and for the first time surpassed the price of gold per ounce, which was worth $1,235 by the end of last night. A year ago, one bitcoin was valued at $421, so it's nearly tripled in 12 months, while gold's price was about the same last year as it is today.

One reason for the virtual currency's surge, according to NBC News:

One factor that may have led to bitcoin's price surge is an upcoming decision by the Securities and Exchange Commission on whether to approve a bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) proposed by venture capitalist twins Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss four years ago.

The decision, which is expected by March 11, would mark the first bitcoin ETF in the U.S. If approved, the ETF would have to buy an estimated $300 million worth of Bitcoin, potentially doubling the value of the currency.

Proponents of bitcoin, like Kelly, argue that the digital currency may be edging out gold as an alternative asset.

And another reason for the record high, according to Bloomberg:

The latest surge in bitcoin’s value has been attributed to tighter currency restrictions in countries such as China, India and Venezuela, as well as speculation about prospects under the Trump administration.

But Bloomberg reminds us that the last time bitcoin peaked in 2013 at $1,137, it then "fell 53 percent in less than a month."

Photo by BTC Keychain Read the rest

How much pee is in your local swimming pool? Study finds out

Ever wonder how much pee is in the pool you're swimming in? If not, sorry to bring it up. But a study was just done by researchers at the University of Alberta in Canada to determine the amount of tinkle in the average public swimming pool, and the results aren't pretty.

The researchers measured the amount of acesulfame-K (an artificial sweetener found in a lot of processed foods) they found in pool water to use as a urinary marker. According to the study, "The widespread consumption of acesulfame-K (ACE), a stable synthetic sweetener, and its complete excretion in urine, makes it an ideal urinary marker. Here we report the occurrence of ACE and its potential application in swimming pools and hot tubs."

Over three weeks, the researchers found 7.92 gallons of urine in the smaller pool that had 110,000 gallons of water. In the larger pool they found 19.8 gallons of urine in 220,000 gallons of water.

According to Today:

You're also going to want to keep your mouth closed while swimming or even hanging out in a hot tub. The researchers tested 250 samples from 31 other pools and hot tubs and found the ACE levels were 570 times higher than tap water.

Experts say that a strong smell of chlorine indicates a pool with a higher level of urine. When your eyes turn red from swimming in a community pool, it's not because of the chlorine.

"When we go swimming and we complain that our eyes are red, it’s because swimmers have peed in the water," Michele Hlavsa, chief of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s healthy swimming program, told TODAY in May.

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Al Franken sending Jeff Sessions letter "to have him explain himself"

When asked this morning on CNN about Attorney General Jeff Sessions' lie regarding his communication with Russia, Sen. Al Franken was generous. "At the very least, this was extremely misleading." Franken also said, "During the campaign, he made a bald statement that he had not met with the Russians. That's not true."

Franken will be sending Sessions a letter "to have him explain himself." Read the rest

Live: Spewing eruption of Mount Etna in Italy

Here's a live video of fiery Mount Etna, on the east coast of Sicily, Italy. The tallest and most active volcano in Europe erupted Monday night, and its pulsing, spewing flames are stunning - and hypnotic. Who needs a lava lamp when you've got the real thing? Read the rest

Watch: 'The Trump Song,' a parody of The Village People's 'YMCA'

Watch East India Comedy perform "The Trump Song" to the tune of The Village People's "YMCA." I'm not sure if I should laugh or cry! Read the rest

Law professors file ethics complaint against Kellyanne Conway, seek sanction

A group of law professors have sent a letter to the Office of Disciplinary Council at the D.C. Court of Appeals calling for sanctions against White House counselor Kellyanne Conway. “It is professional misconduct for a lawyer to [e]ngage in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit, or misrepresentation,” the letter states.

According to New York Daily News:

The letter cites several examples of Conway's alleged misconduct, including the White House counselor's infamous inaccurate claim that a "Bowling Green Massacre" occurred (there is no such thing), her use of "alternative facts" to back up other inaccurate statements put out by the White House, and endorsing Ivanka Trump-brand fashion products.

The disciplinary complaint, which was signed by 15 law professors, including Susan Brooks of Drexel University, Lawrence Fox of Yale Law School, and Michael Tigar of American University and Duke University, ends with this:

"If Ms. Conway were not a lawyer and was “only” engaging in politics, there would be few limits on her conduct outside of the political process itself. She could say and do what she wished and still call herself a politician. But she is a lawyer. And her conduct, clearly intentionally violative of the rules that regulate her professional status, cries out for sanctioning by the DC Bar."

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Saudi King brings 506 tons of luggage on 9-day trip

There's carry-on and checked baggage, but what do you call luggage that weighs 506 tons, including two Mercedes limousines and two elevators? It's just a nine-day trip to Indonesia, but Saudi Arabia's King Salman bin Abdul Aziz isn't leaving any of his creature comforts behind.

According to the Washington Post:

The Saudi royal is expected to bring 459 metric tonnes (506 U.S. tons) of cargo with him on his trip — including two Mercedes-Benz s600 limousines and two electric elevators... The Jakarta Post reports that the Saudi group will total about 1,500 people, including 10 ministers, 25 princes and at least 100 security personnel.

But apparently this isn't excessive, relatively speaking.

While the Saudi king's colossal cargo hold may seem large, it is not necessarily out of scale with other world leaders. When President Barack Obama visited sub-Saharan Africa in 2013, he was accompanied by 56 support vehicles, including 14 limousines, and hundreds of U.S. Secret Service agents tasked with helping secure locations in Senegal, South Africa and Tanzania.
It'll be the first time in 46 years that the King has traveled to Indonesia, and with that kind of packing checklist, it's a wonder he travels at all. Read the rest

Teens were bored so they built a backyard roller coaster

When two Wisconsin high school boys – sophomore JT Nejedlo and freshman Aidan Deaven – found themselves bored one summer, they decided to build a backyard roller coaster.

"We decided to build a roller coaster because it would be fun," said JT Needle.

As you can imagine, it was easier said than done. But with a dad who used to be a physics professor, they were given the green light to try, and try, and try.

In fact, they tried for a few years – and finally succeeded. Although classmates teased them about it and teachers were skeptical, the boys – Nejedlo now a freshman at the University of Wisconsin and Deaven set to go there in the fall – recently finished their project with an awesome-looking coaster. They were honored by the school board on Tuesday. Sometimes boredom ain't such a bad thing.

Read the full story here. Read the rest

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