Burn, water, burn

Researchers put a bit of old folk wisdom to the test by investigating whether water droplets on the top of leaves actually can focus the sun’s rays and burn them. The result? Score one for folk wisdom, old wives and pure luck.

For years, that line of logic has been why many gardeners advise against watering plants at midday, when the sunlight is at its fiercest. And not laziest. Totally, not laziest. However, there’d never been any scientific basis for this assertion. Until now. Biophysicist Gabor Horvath and his team at Hungary’s Eotvos University have now set out to determine the validity of this notion both through direct experimentation and computer modeling.

They discovered that, depending on the type of leaf, it really was possible for water droplets to burn leaves. In particular, leaves with tiny wax hairs, like those on a fern, were able to hold the droplets just above the leaf surface. Much like a magnifying glass, the droplet focused the light directly onto the leaf, which left an unmistakable burn. On the other hand, smooth leaves, like the maple, displayed no such burn effects. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, some plants are actually emo.

So, what’s the general verdict? It’s possible, but not exactly likely. Nonetheless, that research alone should be more than good enough for Roland Emmerich to make a movie where water starts massive forest fires. Or M. Night Shyamalan. What a twist!

The internet is not ready for Avatar

Are you feeling down? Has life just kicked you around like you wouldn’t believe? Did you get that girl knocked up, only to get fired from your job for being late too often? Is your completely bullsh*t and not a real totally real disease of Asperger Syndrome keeping you from being a productive member of society (which is totally not your own fault at all)?

Then we, repeat, cannot stress enough that YOU NOT SEE JAMES CAMERON’S MOVIE AVATAR. Because you will kill yourself.

Oh, not because it’s a bad movie. The plot is far from mind-blowing, but the graphical aspects of the movie alone are a technological achievement for the ages (not out of the norm for the director [Editor’s note: stop editorializing out of your column, Chug]). No, we say that you shouldn’t see the movie because the internet tells us that. And, as always, if it’s on the internet, then it must be true.

Recent posts on Avatar fansites have seen a slightly less than positive view toward our world. It would seem that fans of the movie are becoming depressed because the world of the movie totally outshines our own tangible world. How utterly cruel of Cameron to do such an act. Some of the posts include wonderful passages like:

“That’s all I have been doing as of late, searching the Internet for more info about ‘Avatar.’ I guess that helps. It’s so hard I can’t force myself to think that it’s just a movie, and to get over it, that living like the Na’vi will never happen. I think I need a rebound movie,”


“Ever since I went to see Avatar I have been depressed. Watching the wonderful world of Pandora and all the Na’vi made me want to be one of them. I can’t stop thinking about all the things that happened in the film and all of the tears and shivers I got from it,” Mike posted. “I even contemplate suicide thinking that if I do it I will be rebirthed in a world similar to Pandora and the everything is the same as in ‘Avatar.’ “

Congratulations emo kids of the internet. You’ve now made my day.

Their first album was better, they’re sellouts now

Remember when the terrorists were angry, angst-ridden, had poor hygiene and general hatred of everything that is America? Yeah, man. It was 2001, and terrorism was the scene. I remember hearing about new and emerging terrorist groups on TV that were gaining popularity with their anti-corporate message.

It was just like grunge music.

And like grunge music, the harder, angrier side has given way to a less secure, depressed undertone. While modern terrorism today claims its roots in the good old days, it has grown into something that would make Kurt Cobain roll over in his infidel grave.

Just look at Umar Farouk AbdulMutallab, the man authorities say tried to blow up a plane on Christmas. Only a few years ago, he was a lonely, pitiful, confused teenager reaching out to Muslim chat forums for friends.

“‘First of all, I have no friend[s],’ he wrote in another online post with informal, imperfect grammar. ‘Not because I do not socialise (sic), etc but because either people do not want to get too close to me as they go partying and stuff while I don’t. or they are bad people who befriend me and influence me to do bad things.

‘i have no one to speak too, no one to consult, no one to support me and i feel depressed and lonely. i do not know what to do.'”

He allegedly can’t even set his underwear on fire correctly. Emoooooooooo.

Well, consider our minds blown

Lucy Vodden, the inspiration for famous Beatles’ song “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” died of Lupus on Monday

Wait. “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” wasn’t about LSD? You mean we’ve been dropping acid to a song about a four-year-old little girl that Julian “Hey Jude” Lennon went to school with?

Yeah right. What’s next? That Eric Clapton’s “Tears from Heaven” isn’t a great song for getting laid but about his dead son …?


Rock music is so emo.

First Mexico, now England rattles anti-emo sabre

England is waking up to realize a menace is upon them. “A sinister cult,” as The Daily Mail puts it, obsessed with self-harm and suicide. A threat that America has just about wedgied out of existence and that Mexico put to the lash.

We are speaking, of course, about emos.

Now, this article doesn’t guarantee action, but it is the first step towards British involvement:

  1. Point at someone and say, “Wot is this all about?”
  2. Remind that person that they are British: “Stand up now, Guvnah. You’re British.”
  3. If they are not, in fact, British, condemn them: “Now that’s downright bawmy. Away with you, you little bugger.”
  4. When words fail, fetch a “Constable” or perhaps “engage in some fisticuffs.”

The empire is just about poised to strike back … at sad little teenagers.

What is it with the Germans and animals?

While we’ve been focusing on the Knut the man-eating polar bear story lately, it’s important to note that there are other animals in Germany. These animals are just as dangerous, not only because they are animals, but because they are German. We all know how it goes when the Germans get riled up about stuff, same goes for the animal population.

No better an example of German animals and their freaky German fetishes is there than a swan love story in Muenster. There, Petra the swan fell in love with a swan paddleboat in 2006. However, Petra was later separated from her unnatural love with a seagoing vessel, in hopes she would find a new mate. She did, but he flew off.

“A zoo statement says that Petra ‘appears to feel lonely’ and is swimming around in an agitated state. The solution? On Friday, she will be taken back to the nearby lake and her faithful paddleboat.”

Not only is this an abomination against God and the natural order of things, but it means Muenster will no longer have its main attraction, Petra the emo swan.

Thanks a heap, Mexico

Great, now emo kids have something else to cry about.

WARNING: The preceding link is not for the faint of heart.  Not since the last Dashboard Confessional tour has so much concentrated emo been recorded on a camera.

The surprising part, though, isn’t that the rockabilly, punk and metalhead teens are beating the eye-liner out of them.  No, it’s that the emo kids aren’t fighing back at all–just staging demonstrations.

OK, so they can fight vampires, but not Brian Setzer, the skinny corpse of Sid Vicious and Metallica?  Lame.